Entries in the 'Atlanta' Category

June 11, 2008

Another Woodworker Comes to Tiki, With Lovely Results

Filed under: Art,Atlanta,People,Perfect Tiki Bar,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 10:36 pm
Tiki bar by Wes Bailey
Tiki bar by Wes Bailey

Tiki bar construction is a bit weird — it’s an effort to intentionally create something that looks a little haphazard, a little goofy, and frankly… a little ugly. Now of course, I find it beautiful — and you probably do, too — but you have to admit, it’s not likely to wind up in the pages of House Beautiful.

I just got a really nice email from a professional woodworker who normally specializes in a much more conventionally refined style, and was asked to create one of these delightful little monsters for the first time:

My name is Wes Bailey, and I am a furniture maker in Atlanta, GA. A few months back, a client came to me and requested that I design and build a Tiki Bar for his basemant renovation. I must confess that, at the time, I was woefully unaware of the well-established sub culture of the Tikiphile. So I did some internet research and came across your terrific site, which helped give me the requisite inspiration to deliver the goods! It turned out great, the customer loved it and hasn’t been sober since, so I view that as a real success.

I have to admit, it makes me warm & squishy. I get lots & lots of really wonderful emails along the lines of this one, and they always make my day… but this one is a favorite because, well, I just really like the bar he built. A lot of credit goes to the owner, who has done a great job decorating the room. But the bar itself is really nice, especially for a right-out-of-the-gate effort. Tikis: check. Not too clean in the design, but still with a sense of balance: check. Organic feel: check. I especially like the detour from the standard thatch roof: wood slats that look like they’ve been through a hell of a storm, and loved it. It floats my outrigger.

August 28, 2006

Video of Trader Vic’s in Atlanta

Filed under: Atlanta,Tiki,Trader Vic's — Humuhumu @ 10:38 am
Still from TripSmarter.com video of Trader Vic's in Atlanta
Still from TripSmarter.com video of Trader Vic’s in Atlanta

Martiki dug up this 4-1/2 minute video on TripSmarter.com of my favorite of all the stateside Trader Vic’s, the one in Atlanta. The Atlanta Trader Vic’s opened in 30 years ago, in 1976, and unlike many older Polynesian restaurants, it thankfully hasn’t been remodeled, and remains a dark, moody and mysterious place — it’s a great example of an ideal Tiki restaurant. The video has a couple of annoying aspects — the camera moves around too much and too quickly, where I would have rather seen nice, long panning shots of the restaurant. There is a brief appearance by Tiki Road Trip author James Teitelbaum, mis-identified as “John.” The host of the clip apparently went through the same “make it perky, but keep it bland!” traning they seem to put every personality from HGTV & Food Network through. All that aside, it does give a decent look at one of my favorite restaurants. If you want to see more of the Atlanta Trader Vic’s, I have a bunch of photos on Critiki from my trip there in 2004, when (thanks to pablus & Tiki Kiliki) I had the opportunity to photograph the restaurant when it was empty.

UPDATE: James “John” Teitelbaum has chimed in on the Tiki Central thread, turns out he has no memory whatsoever of being interviewed for this video. Just goes to show, give ol’ Teitelbaum a few Mai Tais, and he’s game for just about anything. Next time I see him, I’m totally going to bring a marionnette, some lederhosen and a viking helmet. The kind with blond braided pigtails attached.

April 2, 2006

Hale Tiki Liquidation Sale

Filed under: Atlanta,News,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:13 am
Hale Tiki in Augusta is liquidating
Hale Tiki in Augusta is liquidating

As I reported last month, Hale Tiki, a newer tiki bar in Augusta, Georgia, recently closed. Owner Brad Owens has posted information about a liquidation sale on Tiki Central. A hoped-for sale of the bar as an operating business fell through, and now all the pieces of Hale Tiki are up for sale, including floats, lamps, tikis, masks, barware, bamboo, thatch and even the tapa on the walls. He also has a cache of vintage Otagiri coconut mugs:

I even have about five dozen ORIGINAL coconut mugs from OMC. I found them in a warehouse in New Orleans after the hurricane. The guy sold them to me and told me that he owned a place called the Bamboo Villa in the French Quarter in the 60s. They are in the original boxes packed six to a box!

Brad has not yet determined how to best sell the items; right now the best way to get in on the sale is to call Brad at (706) 722-3843, or email him at brad.owens@lycos.com. He may put some items up for sale online, but he hasn’t decided yet. Hale Tiki was unusual among newer bars in the density and richness of its tiki decor — there are sure to be some very fine pieces available.

March 13, 2006

Atlanta: 30th Anniversary Bash at Trader Vic’s

Filed under: Atlanta,Events,Music,News,Tiki,Trader Vic's — Humuhumu @ 5:32 pm
30th Anniversary of Atlanta Trader Vic's
30th Anniversary of Atlanta Trader Vic’s

In celebration of Trader Vic’s 30 years in Atlanta, master event producer Tiki Kiliki is throwing a bash on the weekend of April 28th and 29th.

On Friday, April 28, there’s a special show at the Starlight Drive-In. The movie hasn’t been announced yet, but vintage movie trailers will be shown, and “Trailer Vic’s” will be serving up drinks, there will be Tiki Torch Marshmallow roasting, and Johnny Knox and Hi Test will be performing. As is the custom at the Starlight, bring your own coolers & cookout setup, and decorate your care space — the best decor wins a tiki carving!

Saturday, April 29 is the main celebration at the Atlanta Trader Vic’s. They’ll be bringin out vintage Oceanic Arts decor that was purchased and put in storage in 1976. King Kukulele is the MC, and Haole Kats, Cocktail Preachers and the hula troupe Hula Halau Kapilialoha will be performing. There will be door prizes, and a “temptation potion” giveaway. Mai Tais will be available for only $4.50, and you can make reservations to enjoy a special dinner there that night, too.

The Atlanta Trader Vic’s is my personal favorite Trader Vic’s. It’s located in the bottom level of the Atlanta Hilton, which has rooms available that weekend for only $89/night. Kiliki is most famous for organizing the annual Hukilau event at the Mai Kai in Ft. Lauderdale, but her regular Tiki Torch Nights in Atlanta are hugely fun and popular. This should be a real winner of a weekend, and the cost is only $10 each night.

February 23, 2006

Hale Tiki in Augusta Has Closed

Filed under: Atlanta,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 1:04 pm
Tiki at Hale Tiki in Augusta
Tiki at Hale Tiki in Augusta

The Hale Tiki in Augusta, Georgia has gone out of business. The bar opened to much fanfare in 2004. The bar was owned by Brad “The Beachcomber” Owens, who enlisted the help of Basement Kahuna, Bamboo Ben, Crazy Al, and many other carvers and artists, ultimately creating a tapa and bamboo encrusted bar that was unusually lovely. Initially things were promising, with raves about the uncommonly good drinks, and music only being played from vintage lps.

All was not rosy, however… Owens earned some very bad publicity when he didn’t follow through on many mug and shirt orders, and did not communicate in a timely fashion about the status of orders, leaving many tikiphiles who were trying to be supportive of the Hale Tiki feel cheated. Eventually the orders were filled, but the damage had been done to Owens’ reputation. Down the road, a business feud with Basement Kahuna also seemed to negatively impact the mana of the place — I’ve heard multiple reports about the dismal quality of the drinks there in recent months, and the declining decor.

Today on Tiki Central, Brad Owens announced that the Hale Tiki’s final day was last Friday, February 17. He says he’s considering offers to sell the bar outright, but it may not open again. No word on what will come of the many carvings and artwork, some of which were donated to Hale Tiki by Tiki Centralites.

I’m glad that I got to enjoy Hale Tiki in happier times, and I lament its loss.

October 19, 2005

Tiki Torch Nights Atlanta: October 22, with Otto & APE

Filed under: Art,Atlanta,Events,Music,Tiki,Trader Vic's — Humuhumu @ 8:46 pm
Tiki Kiliki & Humuhumu at the July 2004 Tiki Torch Night
Tiki Kiliki & Humuhumu at the July 2004 Tiki Torch Night

This coming Saturday, October 22, is the latest in Tiki Kiliki’s ongoing Tiki Torch Nights event series, held at the Atlanta Trader Vic’s (which is my favorite of the remaining U.S. Trader Vic’s locations). I made it to a Tiki Torch Night in Atlanta in July 2004 (pictured above), and had a grand old time.

This weekend’s slate is pretty fantastic: it’s a signing for Otto von Stroheim’s Tiki Art Now book, with Otto, Derek Yaniger and Crazy Al Evans in attendance. Derek Yaniger’s artwork is featured in the book; this Atlanta resident has been responsible for a lot of great event artwork, including posters and mugs. Crazy Al Evans’ artwork is also in the book — Crazy Al lives in Orange County, and his trip to Atlanta serves a double purpose: Crazy Al is bringing along some of his San Francisco-based bandmates from APE. Not to be missed. Also performing this weekend are The Surge, Dames A’Flame, and Hula Halau Kapilialoha. There will be a Halloween costume contest, complimentary appetizers and $4.50 Mai Tais, and a Temptation Potion will be given away at 10:30. The soiree kicks off at 8 p.m.

Tiki Kiliki has also started throwing Tiki Torch Nights at the Mai Kai in Ft. Lauderdale, stay tuned to her website for the next event near you.

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About Humuhumu
Humuhumu is the creator of several tiki websites. She is a designer and programmer based out of San Francisco.

- Website Design and Programming

- A Worldwide Guide to Tiki Bars & Polynesian Restaurants

- Tiki Mugs & More: Track & View Collections




Arkiva Tropika
Mimi Payne’s massive Polynesian Pop collection

Barefoot Bloggin’
A surfin’, ukein’, freewheelin’ monkey boy

Beachbum Berry
Author of Grog Log and Intoxica!, and one of my dearest drinkin’ buddies

Blog from the user interface designer extraordinaire

Worldwide Guide to Tiki Bars & Polynesian Restaurants

Dumb Angel
A look at the 1960s Los Angeles mod, pop, surf, and music scene

Eye of the Goof
Pop culture with a tiki tinge

Forbidden Island
My Wednesday hangout, the Bay Area’s best tiki bar

Humuhumu’s Life in Photos
Pictures of my adventures

I build websites

Junkyard Clubhouse
Random interesting things from Humuhumu & Hanford Lemoore

Kevin Kidney
Kevin loves tiki, I love Kevin, you will too

Tiki links galore

Mai Tai Online
Montreal-based tiki ‘zine

Tiki Mug Collection Organizer

The Jab
Follow the way of the jab

Tiki Bar TV
Public Access meets Modern Drunkard

Tiki Central
Community forums

Tiki Magazine
Periodical publication covering the wide world of Tiki

Tiki Talk
Hot Lava’s Tiki Blog